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Prevent fires from home heating equipment

Guidelines to help prevent fires from home heating equipment


The New York State Office of Fire Prevention and Control (OFPC) issued a Safety Alert advising homeowners and businesses throughout New York State that heavy snowfall and drifting snow may create a new hazard: carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless, dangerous gas, commonly known as CO.

Fire Prevention
To prevent fires, keep furnishings and other combustibles 36 inches from all heating sources. A heating source too close to combustibles is the leading cause of fires due to home heating. Store matches and other fire starting appliances out of the reach of children. Fires started by children often have tragic results.

Follow Proper Maintenance
Proper maintenance and an annual inspection of heat pumps, furnaces, space heaters, wood and coal stoves, fireplaces, chimneys and chimney connections by qualified specialists can prevent fires and save lives. Follow the manufacturerís instructions for installation, venting, fueling, maintenance and repair.

Review the owner's manual to make sure you remember the operating and safety features.

  • Space Heaters - When using portable heaters, do not place them where it is possible for small children or pets to fall against them or to receive a contact burn. Avoid the use of extension cords with electric heaters. Always turn off space heaters before leaving the room or going to bed.
  • Fuel Burning Appliances - When taking a heater out of storage in the fall, install batteries and inspect the shut off mechanism and wick for proper operation. Fill the tank with fresh fuel. Let the heater cool down before refueling. Adding fuel to a hot heater can start a dangerous fire.
  • Wood Burning Appliances and Fireplaces - Do not burn trash in the wood stove or fireplace. Burn only well-seasoned hardwoods. Be sure the fire you build fits your fireplace or stove, don't overload it. Be sure wood stoves are installed at least 36 inches away from the wall. Keep combustible materials well away from the fireplace, stove and chimney. Keep the area around them clean. Always use a fireplace screen to prevent sparks from leaving the fireplace and starting a fire. Never leave a fire unattended.
  • Chimneys - Creosote accumulation is the leading cause of chimney fires. A chimney that is dirty, blocked or is in disrepair can inhibit proper venting of smoke up the flue and can also cause a chimney fire. Nearly all residential fires originating in the chimney are preventable. An annual chimney inspection by a qualified chimney sweep can prevent fire or carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • Ashes - Keep wood stoves and fireplaces free of excess ash buildup. Excessive ash buildup prevents good circulation of air needed for   combustion. When removing ashes, use a metal container with a tight-fitting cover. Always place ashes in an outside location away from structures. Ashes that seem cool may contain a smoldering charcoal that can start a fire.
  • Be Prepared - No matter how careful you are with home heating, you and your family should be prepared in case fire strikes.
  • Install Smoke Detectors - Place smoke detectors on every level of your home and outside each sleeping area. Test your smoke detectors regularly and replace dead batteries immediately.
  • Make and practice a home escape plan.

 

 


A Fire Safety Message from the New York State Office of Fire Prevention and Control
99 Washington Ave, Suite 500 Albany, New York 12210-2833 (518) 474-6746

 

Main-Transit Fire Department elects officers for 2017

Main-Transit Fire Department elects officers for 2017

Congratulations to the 2017 elected officers of the Main-Transit Fire Department:

Fire Chief – Daniel Hooper
1st Assistant Chief – Bradley Sprague
2nd Assistant Chief – Adam Karl
Senior Captain – Michael Karl
Captain – Greg Havas
President – Brian Rusin
Vice President – Scott Saxer
Secretary – Andrew Zippiroli
Financial Secretary – Carol Jackson
Treasurer – Harry Schick
Sergeant at Arms – Tatianna Boyle


Board of Directors
Peter Frank
DJ Graff
Michael Karl
Robert Karl
Jim Lawida
Daniel Hooper
Brian Rusin


Congratulations to all!

Main-Transit Fire Department maintains Station One at 6777 Main St., Station Two at 5560 Sheridan Drive and more than 12 pieces of fire apparatus. The department is responsible for 5.2 square miles in the Town of Amherst, a protection area consisting of 16,000 residents and  $2.1 billion in property value.

 


 

 

Holiday Safety: Thanksgiving Safety Tips

Thanksgiving Safety Tips Unattended cooking is the leading cause of home fires

MTFD reminds everyone to be careful this holiday season. Thanksgiving is just days away, and as you're planning your menu, you should also plan how to stay safe in the kitchen. Check out our helpful reminders on staying safe in the kitchen!

WASHINGTON —  The makers of deep-fat fryers have a message for ambitious chefs this Thanksgiving: Turkeys don't burn houses down, people do.

As the toward fried — instead of roasted — turkey has grown, so has the concern over the possible dangers of deep-fat fryers.

Allstate Insurance said 15 homes burned to the ground around the country last Thanksgiving as a result of the improper use of turkey fryers. The product-testing company Underwriters Laboratory Inc. refuses to certify as safe any turkey fryer model currently on the market.

In 1999, the last year figures were available, the National Fire Protection Association reported that 500 fires involving a deep-fat fryer took place around the nation, resulting in over $6.8 million dollars in damage.

But defenders say the fryers are as safe as any appliance, if used properly.

"Anything, if you don't follow the directions, can be unsafe," said Johnny McKinion, general manager of Bayou Classic, which manufactures several deep-fat fryers.

"If you don't follow the directions for driving your car or for a chain saw are you going to get hurt? Sure you are," McKinion said. "But if you follow the directions on all of my cookers, they're as safe as anything else."

And, generally speaking, the Maryland State Fire Marshal's office agrees.

"Just like with any other home appliance, the most important piece of equipment that comes with the fryer are the instructions," said Deputy State Fire Marshal W. Faron Taylor.

"When the instructions are followed, the chances of having a fire or burn injury or both are reduced almost 100 percent," Taylor said. "It is when people do not follow the instructions, do not attend to the cooking, don't set equipment up right or in the right location — it is then that we see problems."

But the instructions alone are not enough of a safeguard, say testers at Underwriters Laboratories.

"The numbers (for turkey-fryer fires) are not going down but going up," said Barbara Guthrie, the director of consumer affairs at Underwriters. "At present, we do not believe that there are any sufficient standards that address the safety concerns."

Guthrie said those concerns begin with 5 gallons of scalding 700-degree grease precariously perched over an open flame. And many fryers are unstable — especially the tripod models — which leads to a high incidence of tipping.

When the oil meets the fire, Guthrie said, the fryers instantly become a "vertical flame thrower."

The Underwriters Web site features a video of a turkey fryer filled with hot oil that overflows. When the grease hits the flame, the fryer turns into a volcano of smoke and fire in just seconds.

"We don't believe the taste is worth risking your home, your life or the life of your children," said Guthrie.

Maryland does not keep fryer-specific data, Taylor said. But he noted that cooking fires and kitchen fires are the No. 1 cause of fire in the state, and on days like Thanksgiving when everyone is in the kitchen — or over the fryer — the problems can greatly increase.

If people insist upon frying up a turkey this Thanksgiving, Underwriters suggests that they always fry outside on a flat surface, always tend to the fryer, don't overfill it and make sure the turkey is completely thawed before immersing it.

McKinion said he doubts folks will stop frying turkeys. It has been a tradition in the South for a long time, he said, and his sales in the West and Northeast have increased in recent years. And he thinks people are discovering that the fryer is not just for Thanksgiving anymore.

"They can also deep fry ham, prime rib and pork loin," he said.

Capital News Service contributed to this report.

 

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Banquet Facilities

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Have an upcoming Party or Get-Together?

Check-out and book our newly renovated banquet facilities for your next gathering!

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The Slo-Pokes

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Our competitive Slop-Pokes Team utilize many facets of everyday firefighting skills, including developing unity, dedication, skill amongst themselves, and pride within the department..

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The Explorers

Fostering the Future of Our Youth & Community

Developing support for volunteer fire and community service is an ongoing dedication at Main-Transit Fire Department. The Explorers is our youth program designed to help develop the  formation of positive relationships and a sense of belonging to something greater than ones self, for youths ages 14-18 years of age.

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Softball League

Strength in Teamwork

Our softball games are played on Friday evenings followed by get-together between departments players, members, family and fans. This has helped establish a close friendship amongst neighboring departments that often work together in mutual aid.

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Bowling League

Competitive Fun

Competing in the Amherst Firemen's Bowling League is just one of the many ways that we establish bonds with our neighboring departments while participating in a fun and competitive atmosphere.

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